The replication of the autonomous parvovirus, bovine parvovirus (BPV), has been studied in virus-infected cells. Gel electrophoresis was used to determine the effect of aphidicolin, a specific inhibitor of DNA polymerase α, and -canavanine, an inhibitor of protein synthesis, on viral DNA replication. Synchronized cell cultures were infected with P-labelled or unlabelled BPV in the presence or absence of aphidicolin and -canavanine. Cells were harvested at various times post-infection, and DNA was electrophoresed and blotted. When aphidicolin was added to cells at the time of infection, then removed 8 h later, BPV replicative form DNA (RF) synthesis began within 2 h after its removal. This preceded the peak of cellular DNA synthesis by 2 h, unlike an uninhibited infection, when viral RF synthesis follows the peak of S phase by 2 to 4 h. Furthermore, if aphidicolin was added at any point during the replication cycle, BPV DNA synthesis stopped. This effect was shown to be completely reversible and indicated that aphidicolin did not disrupt the replication apparatus required for viral DNA synthesis. -Canavanine inhibited synthesis of the virus-specific proteins NP-1 and VP3 and synthesis of BPV DNA. Upon removal of -canavanine, viral protein synthesis was detected by 30 min followed by viral DNA synthesis. These results indicate that a specific S phase function other than cellular DNA synthesis is required for initiation of BPV DNA synthesis, that DNA polymerase α plays a major role in BPV DNA replication , and that these inhibitors can be used to inhibit reversibly various stages of BPV DNA replication.


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